Doctor Russo and the Shingleback Skink

Married her for her tits, Doc. That’s the plain and simple of it.

I appreciate your candour, Brad, but In retrospect that might not have been a brilliant decision.

Nevertheless, did it for her tits. She had a fairly yummy derriere back in the day as well, but frankly, between you and me, man to man, it was all about her fantastic booberoos.

You didn’t mention that in our first session.

Well, of course I didn’t. I could hardly say that with Sheila in the room. This is between you and me, Doctor. I assume I can let it all out here, you being sworn to secrecy or whatever.

Sheila strikes me as being an intelligent, attractive, charming woman, Brad.

Yeah, well that’s what people said about her when we first met, but I wasn’t in it for the charms and smarts. I was dedicated to staking my claim on those gorgeous melons.

And now you’ve grown weary of those objects of your obsession?

Years ago. That’s history. I’ve come to the realization that Sheila and I are incompatible in every possible way.

And that took eight years?

I’ve been procrastinating, Doctor.

Could there be something else here, Brad? Have you perhaps become involved with other women? Are you seeing someone?

You already asked me that last week.

Yes, but that was when Sheila was in the room. As you said, this is man-to-man talk now. Apparently you two have some secrets from each other.

What did she tell you in her private session?

Brad?

I know you can’t divulge details, but you did just say ‘we’ have secrets.

Right now this is about you, Brad. This is your turn to give your side of the story. Has your fascination with breasts possibly led you astray?

Astray? Jesus, what is this, anyway? I’m a man, aren’t I?

You’re a married man.

Well I’m trying to do something about that, Doctor. I’m finally going to correct that unfortunate mistake I made eight years ago. Better late than never, as they say.

How much do you know about the Shingleback Skink, Brad?

The what?

They’re lizards, Brad. Tiliqua rugosa is the scientific designation. Being lizards they don’t have tits and yummy derrieres. So do you know what Shingleback Skinks find sexually enticing about each other? What gets them hot and bothered?

Obviously I don’t.

Blue tongues and pink gums, Brad. The bluer the tongue and the pinker the gums, the stronger the attraction.

Dr. Russo, I don’t see the connection here.

The Shingleback Skinks are monogamous, Brad. They stay together for life. You married Sheila for her tits which you’ve acknowledged as a rather frivolous – some would say imbecilic – motive. Most people would say that sort of marriage was doomed to fail.

Which it has. Totally.

The Shingleback Skinks hitch up, so to speak, driven by sexy blue tongues, which doesn’t either sound like the wisest motive for matrimony in God’s strange and wonderful universe, does it? But they stick it out, Brad.

You don’t say?

Those reptiles have got staying power. Long after blue and pink pales into grey, year after year, you’ll find Mr and Mrs Shingleback right there in their cozy little habitat enjoying life together as an inseparable team. I think that teaches us something, Brad.

Very touching, but with all due respect, Doctor Russo, I think that teaches us absolutely zilch. Lizards? I knew these sessions were never going to influence my decision to move on in life – afterall I am not here of my own free will, but neither did I expect to hear such drivel from a man with your reputation.

Have you read my book, Brad?

Sure, you more or less said it was a compulsory part of this therapy. You coerced both of us into buying a copy, remember?

Well if you actually had read the book, Brad, you would know there’s a whole chapter in there dedicated to monogamous animals including the Shingleback Skink.

Well maybe I skimmed a few chapters, Doc.

This tells me something about you, Brad. It tells me you dally with the truth whenever it’s convenient. Isn’t that so?

No, I read the important parts. I skipped the animal husbandry stuff. OK? Big deal.

My guess is you’ve also just lied to me about not seeing other women. Hasn’t it dawned on you that a person with my training and experience can see through your smoke screen. This isn’t about incompatibility. My assessment is that you’ve got something cooking on the side.

What the f . . . ? Are you a marriage counselor or the DA?

Brad, you need to confide in me. If I’m going to help you I need to hear the truth, the whole truth and nothing but.

I’ll tell you what the truth is, Doctor Russo. Here’s my little story free from lizards: You know how they always talk about the old great bands like U2 or Queen, AC-DC and so on and so forth? They talk about those bands as if everyone in them was equally important when it’s really just the lead singer and sometimes the guitarist who were the real stars. The rest of those band members were dispensable. They were cut and paste material. Nobody gave a shit whether they came or went.

You’re forgetting the Beatles.

The exception that proves the rule . . . Sheila’s and my marriage is like one of those bands, Doctor, and I’m the lead singer who also happens to play all the guitar solos.

And your wife?

Sheila’s does backing vocals and once in awhile gets to shake her tambourine.

And that’s your cruel, egotistical, way of saying your wife is dispensable?

That’s me being totally honest, Doctor. But don’t worry. We’ll do these sessions just like the judge ordered. We’ll go through the motions and listen to your lizard crap and you’ll score your fat fee, but I’m looking for a new gig and nothing’s going deter me from that.

You’ve made that apparent.

Thank you. Are we done for today?

Not quite. According to your paperwork you’ve filed for divorce on no-fault, incompatibility. In my opinion you did that because you are looking to get off cheap, Brad.

We filed on incompatibility because that is what this is all about, Doc.

Only it’s become apparent to me that infidelity and desertion might be more appropriate grounds in this case.

What kind of counselling is this, anyway? Are you threatening me? Sheila and I are in agreement on this. She’s on board with the incompatibility claim. She’s gonna come out of this with a fair share of everything I own . . . more than a fair share, more than she deserves.

Please calm down, Brad. I’m just pointing out that our judicial system, when awarding judgements and arranging settlements, looks quite differently upon incompatibility as opposed to, say, adultery and abuse.

What fucking abuse? What are you talking about?

Restrain yourself, Brad. My job is to make sure you two come to the right decision. And in that capacity it’s my duty to inform you that I see some serious financial implications for you if certain unpleasant facts were to see the light of day.

Kiss my ass, Russo. This is ridiculous. I’m out of here. Don’t expect to see Sheila ever again either. And I am definitely going to lodge a complaint with the ethics board.

There is no ethics board to lodge a complaint with, Brad. You’ve been watching the wrong soaps.

Well I am going to lodge a complaint with someone. You’re a disgrace to your profession.

I assume you realize that failure to attend these counselling sessions will put you in contempt of court.

Fuck you, Russo!

I assume you realize that your actions indicate you have something to hide.

Fuck you in the ass big time, Russo!

I respectfully caution you–

Suck my wiener, Russo!

Goodbye, Brad.

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